Southend United ended their Papa John’s Trophy campaign in defeat as Colchester United beat Blues 6-1 at the JobServe Community Stadium.
With both sides already out of the competition before a ball was even kicked in Colchester, both managers made plenty of changes from their teams that lined up in the Emirates FA Cup, with Colchester making five changes and Southend making seven.
Included in the Blues squad were several Southend scholars with first-year scholar Tayo Adedoja being accompanied on the bench by second-year scholars Jamie Grossart, Ollie Coker, Tommy Davis and Cameron Brown, and third-year scholar Reiss Chandler.
Colchester were the quicker out of the blocks and were denied an early opener when Jevani Brown got goal side after a slip from Richard Taylor. The U’s striker was clean through on goal only for a superb save from Harry Seaden to keep the striker out.
The home side then almost gifted Southend a goal when goalkeeper Shamal George played the ball straight at Blues striker Kazaiah Sterling. To his credit, however, George did brilliantly well to make amends for his error by getting back across to make the save.
But having been denied earlier on by the goalkeeping of Seaden, Colchester’s number 10 got his name on the scoresheet by nodding Colchester in front. A quick set-piece led to a cross coming in from the right with Brown rising highest to head the ball in.
Southend responded well and created a great chance to level when Shaun Hobson carried the ball forward before picking out a defence-splitting pass through to Sterling. The on-loan Tottenham striker managed to get his shot away, but it was straight at George.
George’s opposite number though was certainly the busier of the two goalkeepers and Seaden was called upon again to save Kwame Poku’s curling effort. And Seaden was soon picking the ball out of his net for a second time as Colchester doubled their lead.
Brown again was the scorer, but the Southend players were up in arms after Matt Rush appeared to be fouled twice in the lead up to the goal. The referee though wasn’t interested as U’s played a through ball into Brown who lofted the ball over Seaden.
Seconds into the second-half and Brown had a chance for a third only for the legs of Seaden to stop him. However, it was only a brief stay of execution for the Blues as Hobson brought down Josh Bohui for a penalty. Brown gladly took the chance to seal his hat-trick, sending Seaden the wrong way.
Brown was immediately replaced after wrapping up the match ball, but it wasn’t near the end of the scoring for the home side who extended their lead as Michael Folivi broke through to fire beyond the despairing dive of Seaden.
Colchester then put a fifth past a beleaguered Southend after Samson Tovide was desperately unlucky to see his effort smack the crossbar. From the rebound though the ball found its way to Noah Chilvers who fired in through the crowd.
And in the final stages, Steve Ball’s side finished off a thumping win against their Essex rivals as Poku finished off a swift Colchester move down the left by sweeping the ball home from the edge of the area to make it six.
Mark Molesley’s side did manage to grab the smallest of consolations in added on time as Sterling scored his first goal for the Blues late on, beating the offside trap of Colchester’s to fire low and hard beyond George.
Colchester United XI: George, Sowunmi, Pell (C)(Miranda 58’), Brown (Tovide 58’), Chilvers, Scarlett, Eastman (Welch-Hayes 63’), Clampin, Poku, Bohui, Folivi. Subs Not Used: Coulter, Senior, Cowan-Hall, Sayer
Blues XI: Seaden, Hobson, Goodship (Nathaniel-George 46’), Egbri, Clifford, Phillips, Sterling, Acquah (O Coker 71’), Rush, R Taylor, White(C)(Chandler 46’). Subs Not Used: Grossart, Davis, Adedoja, Brown
Referee: Alan Young
Assistants: Paul Lister & Stephen Brown
Fourth Official: Paul Yates
Colchester United: Jevani Brown 16’, 38’, 57’, Michael Folivi 62’, Noah Chilvers 70’, Kwame Poku 83’
Southend United: Kazaiah Sterling 90+2’
Colchester United: Marley Marshall Miranda 67’
Southend United: John White 40’, Terrell Egbri 54’, Reiss Chandler 61’, Shaun Hobson 90’